June sixteenth, 2021
Within the second combat of his comeback after a four-year layoff, former five-time world champion Felix Sturm will interact in a real battle of the generations.
On the age of 42 and with 50 skilled fights beneath his belt, Sturm is scheduled to battle up-and-coming prospect James Kraft on Saturday evening over ten rounds on the Universum Health club in Hamburg, Germany.
Kraft is eighteen years youthful than Sturm and holds a spotless file of 19-0-1 with ten knockouts. However can his youth prevail in opposition to the expertise of the veteran Sturm, who has had extra world title fights (23) over the course of a 20-year skilled profession than Kraft had fought in whole (20)?
No, says Maurice Weber, one among Sturm’s closest buddies and new head coach. After Weber efficiently stuffed in for Barry Robinson, who couldn’t get a piece visa to be in Sturm’s nook for his comeback ten-round-shutout of Timo Rost in Germany final December, the duo determined to work collectively any further, sharing the widespread purpose of a sixth world title for Sturm.
“At first, in fact, you may have doubts about working with a terrific buddy, “Weber mentioned. “However Felix and I simply clicked. We talk effectively, and we each attempt to be taught new issues day-after-day. He fought a terrific combat in opposition to Rost, however the layoff did present a little bit.
“I anticipate him to be a lot stronger, a lot sharper on Saturday. We had a terrific coaching camp, and he made a whole lot of progress. Saturday evening is one other step in direction of profitable one other world title, Felix’ sixth as a fighter and my first as a coach.“
Felix Sturm himself couldn’t agree extra: “I believe belief performs an necessary function in sports activities, in life, and I belief Mo. Outdoors of belief, it is very important have somebody in your nook who loves the game of boxing, who works arduous to enhance his expertise day-after-day. Sure, Mo is a younger coach, however boxing was at all times his ardour and can at all times be his ardour. Teaching is his ardour now, and he does it like nobody else I’ve labored with.
“Truthfully, I’m at all times shocked concerning the new issues and concepts he brings to the health club. I didn’t imagine I might be taught a lot extra about boxing at my age. I actually didn’t. That’s all due to Mo. I strongly imagine that he has an extended and really profitable profession forward of him. Our final purpose is to win the world title collectively.“
World Champion, a dream Maurice Weber has been chasing for many of his life. Six years in the past, Weber, who will flip 40 on June 29, got here razor near archiving his dream as he valiantly fought via the ache of a damaged hand and scored a knockdown in a world title problem in opposition to then-WBA champ Jack Culcay – solely to return up quick in a detailed resolution loss.
The damage finally pressured Weber to hold up his gloves, however he couldn’t keep away from boxing for too lengthy. “I really like this sport, “Weber mentioned. “I’ve been in boxing for many of my life, and I really feel that I can nonetheless contribute lots to it. I don’t have any regrets about my profession. My second one, although, shall be much more profitable.“
Weber is absorbing all of the information he can get to enhance himself as a coach, however he additionally works with the expertise he gained as a fighter himself. “Look, I had fairly just a few trainers myself, and most of them taught each fighter, irrespective of the model, irrespective of the load, the identical issues and had them do the identical workouts in the identical depth.
“Once I began as a novice, I needed to do the identical coaching routine as seasoned world champions. I used to be always overtrained. Like the good Roy Jones mentioned, coaching arduous is sweet, essential in fact, however coaching good is even higher.
“That’s what I’m aiming for: arduous however good coaching.“ When requested a couple of function mannequin, Weber defined that “I need to discover my very own model, my very own strategies“: “I’ve great respect for the good trainers within the recreation, and I spend numerous hours on Youtube, watching fights and the interactions between the fighters and their trainers. However ultimately, I don’t need to be a second-rate model of another person. I’d reasonably be a first-rate model of myself.“
To supply each one among his pupils the very best steering attainable, Weber has determined to maintain his steady of fighters small: “Communication is a very powerful factor. If I don’t join with a fighter, why ought to we work collectively? It wouldn’t make sense for both of us. If I’ve too many fighters, I gained’t provide them the trouble every fighter deserves. I skilled that first-hand myself. Communication would endure, coaching would endure, the outcomes would endure. That’s why I made a decision to solely work with a choose few.“
Nonetheless, Weber can have a busy evening on Saturday as he shall be working the nook of 4 of his fighters, together with Sturm. One in all them is gentle welterweight Ilias Kallouch, a 20-year outdated child who’s 2-0 as knowledgeable. “I’ve by no means seen a fighter at 140
who hits as arduous as Ilias – by no means“, Weber acknowledged. “The sky is the restrict for this child.“ Additionally, former feminine world kickboxing champion Hanna Hansen and light-weight middleweight Malik Aksadal will make their respective skilled boxing debuts with Weber of their nook on the undercard.
The Sturm vs. Kraft occasion on Saturday evening is obtainable as a web based PPV on Bild+, the subscription service of the German every day paper Bild.